ATLANTA — With Kevin Durant out with a left knee injury, the Golden State Warriors are looking to find those missing 25 points left by his absence.
On Monday night, they banked on an old reliable source — Andre Iguodala.
The 13-year veteran came off the bench to score a season-high 24 points and spark a second-quarter rally that enabled the Warriors to defeat the Atlanta Hawks 119-111 at Philips Arena.
“Collectively, as a unit, we try to make up for KD’s presence,” Iguodala said. “Tonight we did a great job of that.”
He was more than just a placeholder on Monday. He shot 6 of 8 from the field, including 4 of 6 from 3-point range, and added five rebounds, four assists and three steals.
“I told him it looked like he was 25 out there again,” Golden State coach Steve Kerr said. “Andre has been absolutely phenomenal the last couple of weeks. He just looks so spry out there and young and confident and such a great basketball player.”
Iguodala may prove invaluable during Durant’s recovery, which is expected to take at least four weeks.
Iguodala’s key stretch came in the second quarter. He scored 14 points in the period — the Warriors got 35 points from their bench in the quarter — and were able to erase most of Atlanta’s 15-point lead. Golden State trailed just 66-61 at the half.
The Warriors (52-11) also got 24 points and nine assists from Stephen Curry, 13 points from Klay Thompson and 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists from Draymond Green. All of Thompson’s points came in the second half.
Thompson’s first basket of the game, a pull-up jumper in the third quarter, tied the game at 66-66. He scored nine in the third quarter, as did Curry, who hit a 3-pointer with 9:42 remaining that gave Golden State the lead for good.
Atlanta (34-29) got 23 points from point guard Dennis Schroder, but 19 of those came in the first quarter. Schroder was benched with 9:30 left in the third quarter and never returned when coach Mike Budenholzer grew frustrated with his poor defensive effort. He called the move to leave Schroder on the bench “a coach’s decision.”
“We played Malcolm (Delaney) a lot. We played (Kent Bazemore) at point guard,” Budenholzer said. “There were moments when it felt like we were close to getting back in it and competing. A few more plays from our guys here and there and a few less 3s from Iguodala or (Patrick) McCaw … but that’s the game.”
Schroder and center Dwight Howard were seen arguing on the court, which left Curry wide open for a 3-pointer.
The Hawks also got 20 points and 10 rebounds from Paul Millsap; 19 points, four rebounds and five assists from Tim Hardaway Jr.; 18 points from Kent Bazemore and 15 points from Ersan Ilyasova. Howard grabbed a game-high 19 rebounds.
Atlanta continued to struggle with 3-point defense. The Warriors made 20 treys, including six from Curry and three from rookie Patrick McCaw. The Hawks allowed an NBA regular-season-record 25 3-pointers against the Cleveland Cavaliers two games ago and have allowed at least 14 in each of the past four games.
“We wanted to take the 3-ball away from Curry and Thompson and if the other guys got something going we’d have to live with it,” Budenholzer said.
It was the third straight loss for Atlanta. Golden State won its second straight after dropping back-to-back decisions.
Hardaway said, “No concern at all. We just have to learn from it, smile, move on to the next game. We have another one on Wednesday. We can’t take this game back. It’s just another ‘L’ in the column. We have to do a better job, whatever the case may be, whether it’s defense, whether it’s offense, we just have to be better.”
Golden State’s bench scored 55 points, compared to 37 for Atlanta. The Hawks used only nine players for the fourth straight game.
NOTES: The Warriors won their fifth straight meeting with the Hawks, and Golden State swept the season series. … The Warriors are 39-1 when they have at least 30 assists. They had 33 against Atlanta. … Golden State changed its starting lineup, inserting G Patrick McCaw ahead of F Matt Barnes, who had started since the injury to Kevin Durant. It was the sixth start this season for McCaw, who finished with nine points and seven rebounds. … Atlanta coach Mike Budenholzer was back on the bench after serving a one-game suspension for bumping a referee. … Atlanta plays Wednesday against the Brooklyn Nets, the fifth game of the Hawks’ six-game homestand. Golden State faces the Celtics in Boston on Wednesday.